CBT works to solve current problems and change unhelpful thinking and behaviour. The name refers to behaviour therapy, cognitive therapy, and therapy based upon a combination of basic behavioural and cognitive principles.
Most therapists working with patients dealing with anxiety and depression use a blend of cognitive behavioural therapy and mindfulness. These techniques acknowledge that there may be behaviours that cannot be controlled through rational thought, but rather emerge based on prior conditioning from the environment and other external and/or internal stimuli. CBT is “problem focused” (undertaken for specific problems) and “action oriented” (therapist tries to assist the client in selecting specific strategies to help address those problems), and can be directive as part of the therapeutic approach.
The video below outlines the basic premise underlying the use of CBT.